Essential Horsebox Safety Checks to Perform Now
Are your horsebox safety checks wrote down on a notepad, ready to tick off? As we are primed for life on the road with our horses once again, now more than ever is the time to make sure your horsebox is safe and ready to go.
Restrictions came into force just as we were coming out of winter, a period where many horseboxes and trailers are redundant due to weather conditions and less time spent in the saddle. Where they are stored away for long periods of time, often in damp conditions or worse bracing the elements for months at a time, problems can occur which are best ironed out before even attempting to load a horse, let alone head out onto the road.
With this in mind, and with the lockdown prolonging periods of inactivity for horseboxes and trailers, Tom Janion, Managing Director of Equi-Trek provides a safety checklist to tick off before loading up your horse and heading off.
- Is the MOT on your horsebox up-to-date? This could easily have been forgotten about with the distractions of the past few months. The same applies to the vehicle with which you plan to use to tow a trailer.
- The most common issue on a vehicle that has not been run for a while is a flat battery. Make sure you start the engine to ensure it strikes up the first time.
- Ensure the tread on the tyres meets the minimum legal requirement and also check the tyre pressure. Perished and cracked tyres are very common and it is important to ensure the tread is to the legal guidelines. Both are dangerous and will lead to MOT failure. Correct tyre pressure for each individual horsebox or trailer can be found in the manufacturer’s handbook.
- Check all the electrics are in good working order by enlisting the help of a friend to observe that all the lights and indicators are fully functioning. Sometimes connections can become loose or wires worn over time.
- All horse owners know the dangers of an unsafe floor. Equi-Trek horseboxes and trailers come with aluminium planked floor as standard but some horseboxes and trailers may still have old-fashioned wooden floors. It is vital to check for signs of rot and damage by lifting up rubber matting to inspect underneath.
- Check that there are no sharp or protruding objects and that all the pins in the partitions and breast bars are positioned correctly. In an emergency it should be quick and easy to remove these pins.
- The jockey wheel on a trailer should be regularly maintained by applying a light coating of grease but it is important to check it is working effectively before every journey.
- To make sure that your day out at a show is complete it is a good idea to check everything is working in the living area. Not being able to cook a well-earned bacon sandwich after competing because the hob isn’t working would be a huge disappointment!
All horseboxes run better when they are used on a regular basis so it is worthwhile keeping this simple check list to hand to work through every few weeks. Similarly, get your horsebox or trailer serviced on a regular basis. All Equi-Trek dealers offer a full-service facility and don’t forget mechanical, body and living accommodation checks including water and gas systems.
To discover more about the range of Equi-Trek range of horseboxes and trailers visit Equi-trek.